Friday, May 6, 2011

Consumer Buying Behavior – Do You Know Your Customers?

When it comes to buying products and services, people are motivated by many different factors such as finances, lifestyle, personal taste, and need. Some products are more necessary than others so they often take precedence over other products that might be more discretionary. An example of such might be foregoing the purchase of the latest greatest smartphone and instead getting some much needed clothing for work. All of these factors are generally considered when someone is interested in making a purchase.

A business owner needs to understand the buying behavior of his clients to ensure that he caters to their needs and desires. Obviously cost will be a factor for some people so often some items are simply out of reach financially, but you can still cater to their other needs and simpler, easier to attain desires. Generally speaking, a person who has a limited purchasing budget will buy a cheaper model of phone rather than one with all the newest, fanciest applications and software loaded onto it. As a business owner, you can still fulfill their need for style by offering snazzy colors and lots of accessories for a lower cost phone as well as higher priced ones to satisfy the needs of customers regardless of their financial buying power.

The demographics surrounding your business are also extremely important to ensure you are presenting your products to your audience correctly. If middle-income professionals who are younger surround you, your products should reflect that group's desires and needs. If the area surrounding your business is higher income, older established clientele, your product lines should reflect those tastes. Other factors that can impact the buying behavior are cultural differences or whether you live in a city or a small town as needs will differ in all of these instances.

The media and peer pressure heavily influence younger people. They feel compelled to have the latest, newest products out, so they might be more interested in something that has lots of visual appeal and pizzazz rather than the quality of the product or if it is the best value for the price. Often times, an older person will be looking for practicality and getting the best "bang for their buck". As a business owner your most important lesson to learn is to know your customer and understand their buying behavior so that you can ensure you are marketing your products and services effectively.

Gayle Hawks is President of Color Card Administrator (CCA). CCA is comprised of a combination of online industries involving real estate business cards, stock photography, and e-commerce business cards software licensing.

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